Engaging All Learners

Engaging All Learners

Friday, March 9, 2018

Alabama Civics Test

From Dr. Phyllis Faust, TCS Testing Coordinator

Many thanks to Erin McGuyer, Leigh Stovall, Josh Haynes, and Jeff Schrupp for attending the Alabama Civics Test Development Training providing by Scantron in Tuscaloosa today (March 8).  It was an extremely successful day! Terry Grissom with Scantron facilitated the training by teaching how to create an assessment on the Assessment Series website. After this training, teams were given time to collaborate and create a test or leave for the day. Our team of teachers wanted to stay and work. Because of their diligence, I can proudly say that Trussville City Schools is ready to administer the required Civics test in 2018-2019.

Scantron provided a test bank of 175 multiple choice questions of which 100 questions had to be selected for this test. The conversation was very rich between these teachers who you can tell are very passionate about their content! We read through and discussed all 175 questions. I enjoyed listening to the reasoning behind why they thought one test question should be part of the test and another test question should not.  They even found one test question that gave a wrong answer! Our students are definitely blessed to have these educators as their teachers!  Discussion took place about providing this assessment to their students at some point this year to see how well they can do. 

It was a great day for Trussville City Schools!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Magnolia Hosts Literacy Day

Parents were invited to join their children during their reading block today at Magnolia Elementary.  The goal was for parents to learn more about reading instruction and opportunities for sharing reading experiences with their children.  

After reading with their child, parents were asked to give their child a postive note regarding their reading.  

Kindergarten Science Planning

Kindergarten teachers from Paine met today to plan upcoming science units.  The teachers went through the StemScopes modules that they will be teaching the third trimester, and investigated the materials and equipment.  

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

New TCS Math Coach

Monica Bramlett, fifth grade teacher at Cahaba Elementary, will become Trussville's newest math coach for the 18-19 school year.  Mrs. Bramlett completed her student teaching at Paine, learning alongside legendary teacher, Joan Bynum, and math coach, Gloria Stuckey.  Mrs. Bramlett began her eight year teaching career in Trussville, teaching fourth and fifth grades at Paine and fifth grade this past year at Cahaba.  She received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2008, and her Master of Science Degree in Instructional Leadership from Samford University in 2013.  

We are thrilled to add another math coach to our elementary schools.  Please join me in welcoming Mrs. Bramlett to her new role. 

TCS Administrative Mentor Program

Trussville City Schools is proud to announce a new leadership development program designed to provide experience and mentoring for aspiring principals and assistant principals.

TCS has a well established teacher mentoring program that provides support to first year teachers in our district.  It is a natural "next step" for the district to provide an administrator mentoring program. Experts consistently emphasize the value of mentorships in administrator induction programs.  The Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) describes high-quality mentors as “the key” to improving training for aspiring principals in an effective manner.

Magnolia Principal, Dr. Autumm Jeter, will serve as the Central Office Liaison for the administrative mentorship program.  The goal of the program is to develop administrators within Trussville City Schools for the role of Principal and/or Assistant Principal. Participants will shadow and work alongside an experienced principal within Trussville City Schools to gain first-hand knowledge and experience to carry out the duties of a school-level principal or assistant principal.  Mentorship Program Goals include instructional, management, finance, discipline, and culture.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Elementary Science Teachers Collaborate at ALC

First and fourth grade teachers from Cahaba, Magnolia, and Paine collaborated today on science lessons for the third trimester.  The teachers created PowerPoints to guide daily lessons and selected literature, videos, and other resources to enhance their StemScopes lessons.  Fourth grade teachers analyzed their science data from Scantron. 

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

TCS Elementary EdCamp Hosted by Magnolia

Trussville City Schools held its second of three elementary EdCamps for 17-18 on Monday, February 12, at Magnolia Elementary. 

Built on principles of connected and participatory learning, Edcamp strives to bring teachers together to talk about the things that matter most to them: their interests, passions, and questions. Teachers who attend Edcamp can choose to lead sessions on those things that matter, with an expectation that the people in the room will work together to build understanding by sharing their own knowledge and questions.

The May 2014 Educational Leadership Journal states:
We have to trust that teachers are professionals who use their classrooms as innovative laboratories and who are motivated to engage in authentic learning. Edcamp events are only one component of a balanced professional learning diet. Teachers should also engage in rigorous reading, action research, and collaborative curriculum writing, among other things. However, when included as part of a balanced learning plan, Edcamps can empower and motivate teachers to learn and share powerful practices.

Sessions facilitated by our teachers included:
How to Use Twitter
Kindergarten Number Talks
Integrating Reading Workshop/Conferring in Reading Workshop (Gr 3-5)
Conferring in Reading Workshop for Gr 2
Management Strategies for Teaching Math Curriculum Guides (Gr K-2 and 3-5)
Ways to Enhance Student Presentations with Technology
Strategies that Take Advantage of How the Brain Learns Best
Elementary Counselor Collaboration
World Travelers (Google Expeditions)
Improve Behavior and Increase Learning
Inclusion Strategies
Student Led Conferences/IEP Meetings
How to Use Ticket to Read and Readworks Effectively in the Classroom
Reading Workshop Model/Preparing for Strategy Groups (Grades K-1)

We are thankful for the facilitators and participants who came together to learn and share powerful practices.  We appreciate Magnolia PTO for providing delicious refreshments.  A follow-up survey was sent to obtain feedback about the February 12 EdCamp and interest about sessions for the upcoming May 7 EdCamp at Paine.  Please complete the survey if you have not done so already.